Editorâs note: This is the second in a series of four stories examining why each driver could win the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship.
Monday: Denny Hamlin
Tuesday: Kevin Harvick
Wednesday: Martin Truex Jr.
Thursday: Kyle Busch
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Kevin Harvick will win the 2019 championship because âŠ
âŠ it would be an extremely Kevin Harvick thing to do. Heâs outnumbered â three Joe Gibbs Racing Toyotas to his lone Stewart-Haas Racing Ford â but this ainât El Toroâs first rodeo.
While none of the Championship 4 drivers can consider themselves spring chickens, Harvick ranks as the elder statesman of the group at 43 years young. Needling tends to happen heading into Homestead-Miami Speedway, and with a three-against-one advantage, youâd think the JGR trio could possibly get into the 2014 champâs head, but donât count on it. Thereâs a lot of veteran savvy under that No. 4 helmet.
Harvick has also taken part in five of the six Championship 4 fields to date, winning the first instance of it in 2014 and falling short of the title every year since. Heâll be hungrier than an Everglades alligator, and while the sunset doesnât appear imminent, heâs certainly on the back nine of his career.
Never one to shy away from a fierce on-track battle, perhaps he pushes things to the limit and fans see an even more aggressive Harvick behind the wheel, with no guarantees heâll still be in contention this late as he closes out a brilliant career.
Stats wise, it may look like a down year for the No. 4 group â and make no mistake, it was until a July New Hampshire Motor Speedway win sparked things â but the second half of Harvickâs season has been lights-out, with just one non-mechanical failure finish outside the top nine, a 17th-place run at Talladega Superspeedway.
Heâs no slouch at Miami, either, compiling a straight-up silly average finish of 6.6 (best in the series) with no finishes outside the top 10 since 2007.
When things are down to the wire, Harvick is up to the task, and he will be hoisting his second career Monster Energy Cup on Sunday to further cement an already Hall of Fame career.